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Maintenance hemodialysis (MHD) is the use of a machine to filter wastes, salts and fluid from blood for at least 3 months to prolong the life of patients with advanced kidney failure. Although low dietary energy intake (DEI) has been observed in MHD patients, few studies have related DEI to the risk of mortality. To explore this relationship, a study included 1039 MHD patients from 8 centers was conducted. DEI was assessed by three 24-hour diet recalls including one dialysis day and two non-dialysis days, and was normalized to ideal body weight (IBW). All-cause mortality and CVD mortality were the primary and secondary outcomes, respectively. During a median follow-up of 28 months, all-cause and CVD mortality occurred in 230 (22.1%) and 140 (13.5%) participants. Overall, a U-shaped relationship was observed between DEI and all-cause or CVD mortality. The risk of all-cause mortality decreased significantly with the increase of DEI in participants with DEI <40kcal/kg IBW/d (HR, 0.98; 95% CI: 0.96-1.00) and increased significantly with the increase of DEI in those with DEI ≥40kcal/kg IBW/d (HR, 1.12; 95%CI: 1.04-1.20). Similarly, the risk of CVD mortality decreased with the increase of DEI in participants with DEI <36.5kcal/kg IBW/d (HR, 0.96; 95%CI: 0.93-0.99) and increased with the increase of DEI in participants with DEI ≥36.5kcal/kg IBW/d (HR, 1.11; 95%CI: 1.04-1.18). In summary, there was a U-shaped association between DEI and all-cause or CVD mortality, with a turning point at about 40 and 36.5 kcal/kg IBW/d, respectively, in MHD patients.
This study investigated the effect of pre-exercise α-lactalbumin ingestion on subsequent endurance exercise performance, muscle pain and mood states. In a two-stage cross-over counterbalance design, eleven male endurance runners (age: 31 (se 2) years, height: 169·5 (se 4·4) cm, weight: 63·6 (se 5·1) kg, V̇O2max: 58·8 (se 6·3) ml/kg per min) consumed two solutions (carbohydrate+α-lactalbumin, CA; carbohydrate+whey protein isolate, CW) 2 h before a self-paced 21-km run. Creatine kinase, IL-6, muscle pain, pressure pain threshold (PPT) and mood states were assessed 2 h before exercise, immediately before exercise (Pre-ex0) and immediately after exercise (Post-ex0). No difference was found in 21-km running performance between two trials (CA v. CW: 115·85 (se 5·20) v. 118·85 (se 5·51) min, P=0·48). Compared with CW, CA led to higher PPT at Pre-ex0 (41·77 (se 2·27) v. 35·56 (se 2·10) N/cm2, P<0·01) and Post-ex0 (38·76 (se 3·23) v. 35·30 (se 3·55) N/cm2, P=0·047). Compared with CW, CA reduced the feeling of fatigue at Post-ex0 (P<0·01); CA also reduced salivary cortisol levels at Post-ex0 (0·72 (se 0·07) v. 0·83 (se 0·13) ng/ml, P<0·01). In conclusion, the ingestion of α-lactalbumin did not improve the 21-km time-trial performance. However, compared with the pre-exercise ingestion of whey protein, that of α-lactalbumin led to superior results during similar levels of endurance exercise: it elevated PPT and reduced the feeling of fatigue and the cortisol levels.
A new ternary compound Al5NdNi2 was prepared by melting a stoichiometric mixture of aluminum, neodymium, and nickel in an arc furnace and annealing in vacuum. The crystal structure of Al5NdNi2 was studied by X-ray powder diffraction technique and Rietveld analysis. All diffraction lines of Al5NdNi2 were indexed, and the lattice parameters were refined with an orthorhombic structure type of space group Immm (No.71) using Rietveld analysis program DBWS-9807. The lattice parameters are presented, a = 7.0508(1) Å, b = 9.5690(1) Å, c = 3.9792(1) Å, V = 268.47 Å3, Z = 2, ρ = 4.91 g cm−3, and RIR = 1.23.
Two new species of Nilssoniopteris of the order Bennettitales, Nilssoniopteris hamiensis Zhao and Deng, new species and Nilssoniopteris crassiaxis Zhao and Deng, new species, are established from the Xishanyao Formation (Middle Jurassic) of Sandaoling Coal Mine in Hami, Xinjiang, China, based on leaf macromorphology and cuticular features. Nilssoniopteris hamiensis n. sp. is characterized by its varied leaf shapes and trichome bases of 1–4 cells on the abaxial epidermis. Nilssoniopteris crassiaxis n. sp. is characterized by its broad midrib (especially near the leaf base) and trichome bases of 1–3 cells on the abaxial epidermis. Both species possess unique venation patterns that are not only simple and free, but also forked and merged to form closed loops. These anastomosing veins are even more complicated in N. crassiaxis n. sp. in that the veins can fork once, twice, or even three times, the forked veins can later merge with each other or with an adjacent vein to form a closed loop, which may later further disjoin. The generic diagnosis of Nilssoniopteris is thus accordingly emended, particularly in the venation pattern. In addition, the stratigraphic and geographical distributions of all 45 Jurassic Nilssoniopteris species worldwide have been summarized and analyzed to better understand their brief evolutionary history, indicating that Nilssoniopteris might be able to grow not only in subtropical regions as the living cycads are, but also in warm climatic regions.
The resolution of the electron microscope is now largely limited by the performance of its electron source when various aberrations in the electron imaging system, especially spherical aberrations, are corrected. A nanowire tip could be an ideal point electron source, where electrons are emitted from a small physical area. In this article, we review recent advances in electric-field-induced electron emission using a single nanowire, specifically, single-crystalline lanthanum hexaboride (LaB6) nanowire, compared to the state-of-the-art contemporary tungsten cold-field electron emitter W(310) as well as single atom tip and single-carbon nanotube emitters. Owing to its low work function, improved emission stability, and high emission brightness, the LaB6 nanowire as a cold-field-emission electron source offers a new and exciting opportunity for developing the next generation of electron microscopes.
Toxoplasmosis is a serious zoonoses disease and opportunistic, and can be life-threatening. Dexamethasone (DEX) is widely used in the clinic for treatment of inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. However, long-term use of DEX is often easy to lead to acute toxoplasmosis in patients, and the potential molecular mechanism is still not very clear. The aims of this study were to investigate the effect of DEX on proliferation of Toxoplasma and its molecular mechanisms, and to establish the corresponding control measures. All the results showed that dexamethasone could enhance the proliferation of Toxoplasma gondii tachyzoites. After 72 h of DEX treatment, 566 (±7) tachyzoites were found in 100 host cells, while only 86 (±8) tachyzoites were counted from the non-treated control cells (P < 0·01). Gas chromatography (GC) analysis showed changes in level and composition of fatty acids in DEX-treated host cells, and T. gondii. Fish oil was added as a modulator of lipid metabolism in experimental mice. It was found that mice fed with fish oil did not develop the disease after infection with T. gondii, and the structure of fatty acids in plasma changed significantly. The metabolism of fatty acid in the parasites was limited, and the desaturase gene expression was downregulated. These results indicate that the molecular mechanism of dexamethasone to promote the proliferation of T. gondii may be that dexamethasone induces the change of fatty acids composition of tachyzoites and host cells. Therefore, we recommend supplementation of fatty acid in immunosuppressive and immunocompromised patients in order to inhibit toxoplasmosis.
Although many studies worldwide have focused on the relationship between vitamin D and insulin resistance, results remain controversial. Furthermore, concentrations of serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) in the Chinese population are unclear. We aimed to investigate vitamin D status and its correlation with insulin resistance among a Chinese adult population.
Serum 25(OH)D, fasting blood glucose, fasting insulin, glycated Hb (HbA1c) and other metabolic parameters were assessed. Neck circumference, waist circumference, hip circumference, weight and height were also measured. Lifestyle factors including smoking and drinking status were obtained. Diabetes mellitus was diagnosed by HbA1c according to the 2010 American Diabetes Association criteria.
Of 7200 residents included, 6597 individuals were ultimately analysed.
We enrolled 2813 males (mean age 52·7 (sd 13·5) years) and 3784 females (52·3 (sd 13·5) years); mean serum 25(OH)D concentration was 43·1 (sd 11·6) and 39·6 (sd 9·8) nmol/l, respectively. Additionally, 83·3 % of participants were 25(OH)D deficient. A significant difference in 25(OH)D was observed between males and females in winter and spring (P<0·001). Furthermore, 25(OH)D concentrations were inversely associated with the homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) in the overweight and pre-diabetic populations. After adjusting for several variables, 25(OH)D was significantly associated with HOMA-IR in winter. When 25(OH)D values were categorized into quartiles, HOMA-IR was significantly associated with decreasing 25(OH)D.
The majority of the Chinese population was vitamin D deficient and this deficiency was negatively associated with insulin resistance, particularly in the overweight and pre-diabetic populations. Moreover, these associations might be more evident in the winter.
Recent studies have suggested an association between vitamin D and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD); however, some results are subject to debate. This study was carried out to evaluate the correlation between NAFLD and vitamin D in men and women in East China. The data were obtained from a cross-sectional study that focused on the health and metabolic status of adults in sixteen areas of East China. According to ultrasonic assessments, the patients were divided into normal and NAFLD groups. Demographic characteristics and biochemical measurements were obtained. Binary logistic regression analysis was used to explore the association. In total, 5066 subjects were enrolled, and 2193 (43·3 %) were diagnosed with NAFLD; 84·56 % of the subjects showed vitamin D deficiency. Subjects with high vitamin D levels had a lower prevalence of NAFLD, particularly male subjects. Within the highest quartile of vitamin D levels, the prevalence of NAFLD was 40·8 %, whereas the lowest quartile of vitamin D levels showed a prevalence of 62·2 %, which was unchanged in women across the vitamin D levels. Binary logistic analysis showed that decreased vitamin D levels were associated with an increased risk of NAFLD (OR 1·54; 95 % CI 1·26, 1·88). This study suggests that vitamin D levels are significantly associated with NAFLD and that vitamin D acts as an independent factor for NAFLD prevalence, particularly in males in East China. Vitamin D interventional treatment might be a new target for controlling NAFLD; elucidating the mechanism requires further research.
In this paper, a DG (Discontinuous Galerkin) method which has been widely employed in CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) is used to solve the two-dimensional time-domain Maxwell’s equations for complex geometries on unstructured mesh. The element interfaces on solid boundary are treated in both curved way and straight way. Numerical tests are performed for both benchmark problems and complex cases with varying orders on a series of grids, where the high-order convergence in accuracy can be observed. Both the curved and the straight solid boundary implementation can give accurate RCS (Radar Cross-Section) results with sufficiently small mesh size, but the curved solid boundary implementation can significantly improve the accuracy when using relatively large mesh size. More importantly, this CFD-based high-order DG method for the Maxwell’s equations is very suitable for complex geometries.
Live cells can sense the mechanical characteristics of the microenvironment and translate the mechanical cues to intracellular biochemical signals in physiology and disease. To investigate intracellular signaling transduction during mechanosensing, nanotechnologies, and FRET live-cell imaging technologies have been developed to visualize the output signals in real time, such as intracellular molecular activity. Meanwhile, micropatterned technologies have been applied to modulate the physical and mechanical environment surrounding the cell to fine-tune the input signals in cellular mechanosensing. These advanced technologies can join forces and shed new light into the molecular networks that control mechanotransduction in normal conditions and disease.
The mechanical properties and internal friction (damping capacity) of Mg–Zn–Y alloys with a long-period stacking ordered (LPSO) structure at different Y/Zn atomic ratios (2/1, 3/2 or 4/3) in cast and extrusion were investigated. It was found that the as-cast Mg–Zn–Y alloys with different Y/Zn atomic ratios possess a single LPSO phase with the same stable 18R-type structure. Among the three alloys, the alloy with 3/2 atomic ratio yields the highest damping capacity in low- and high-strain amplitude stages. Two damping peaks particularly P1 and P2 are detected in the Mg–Zn–Y alloy with 3/2 atomic ratio at approximately 108 and 220 °C, respectively. These results may be attributed to few solute atoms in Mg matrix and grain boundaries. In addition, the studied alloy with 3/2 atomic ratio exhibits excellent comprehensive properties in as-cast and as-extruded states; this alloy yields an ultimate tensile strength of 346 MPa and maintains a certain damping capacity (Q−1 > 0.01) in extrusion.
Severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome (SFTS) is an emerging infectious disease that was caused by a novel bunyavirus, SFTSV. The study aimed to disclose the epidemiological and clinical characteristics of SFTSV infection in China so far. An integrated clinical database comprising 1920 SFTS patients was constructed by combining first-hand clinical information collected from SFTS sentinel hospitals (n = 1159) and extracted data (n = 761) from published literature. The considered variables comprised clinical manifestations, routine laboratory tests of acute infection, hospitalization duration and disease outcome. SFTSV-IgG data from 19 119 healthy subjects were extracted from the published papers. The key clinical variables, case-fatality rate (CFR) and seroprevalence were estimated by meta-analysis. The most commonly seen clinical manifestations of SFTSV infection were fever, anorexia, myalgia, chill and lymphadenopathy. The major laboratory findings were elevated lactate dehydrogenase, aminotransferase, followed by thrombocytopenia, lymphocytopenia, elevated alanine transaminase and creatine kinase. A CFR of 12·2% was estimated, significantly higher than that obtained from national reporting data, but showing no geographical difference. In our paper, the mortality rate was about 1·9 parts per million. Older age and longer delay to hospitalization were significantly associated with fatal outcome. A pooled seroprevalence of 3·0% was obtained, which increased with age, while comparable for gender. This study represents a clinical characterization on the largest group of SFTS patients up to now. A higher than expected CFR was obtained. A wider spectrum of clinical index was suggested to be used to identify SFTSV infection, while the useful predictor for fatal outcome was found to be restricted.
This study presented a novel fabrication process for TiNi thin films by vacuum diffusion technology using reactive Ni/Ti/Ni multilayer thin films. The sandwiched thin films were prepared by chemical nickel plating. Ni/Ti/Ni multilayer films were heat treated for various diffusion times and temperatures and the influences of the temperature and diffusion time on the interdiffusion behavior of the Ti–Ni system were researched in detail. The results showed that a homogeneous TiNi thin film was obtained at 1173 K with a diffusion time of 4 h. Moreover, the formation sequence of the intermetallics in the Ti–Ni diffusion system was investigated by thermodynamic analysis and experiment. It was found that three compounds – TiNi3, Ti2Ni, and TiNi – formed in the diffusion process at the Ti/Ni interfaces. More importantly, the nucleation of TiNi3 and Ti2Ni was prior to that of TiNi because of the lower reaction Gibbs free energy and increasing interface energy of TiNi3 and Ti2Ni.
The CeCo3Ni2 compound was synthesized by arc melting under argon atmosphere. High-quality powder X-ray diffraction (XRD) data of CeCo3Ni2 have been collected using a Rigaku SmartLab X-ray powder diffractometer. The refinement of the XRD pattern for the CeCo3Ni2 compound shows that the CeCo3Ni2 is a hexagonal structure, space group P6/mmm (No.191) with a = b = 4.9081(2) Å, c = 4.0034(2) Å, V = 83.52 Å3, Z = 1, and ρx = 8.6347 g cm−3. The Smith–Snyder FOM F30 = 112.7(0.0089, 30) and the intensity ratio RIR = 0.48.
A new ternary compound Ho2AlGe3 was synthesized and studied by means of X-ray powder diffraction technique. The powder pattern of Ho2AlGe3 was indexed and refined, giving an orthorhombic structure, space group Pnma (No. 62) with the Y2AlGe3 structure type: a = 6.743 98(8) Å, b = 4.163 73(5) Å, c = 17.5834(2) Å, V = 493.74 Å3, Z = 4, ρx = 7.73 g cm−3, F30 = 202.7 (0.004, 37), and RIR = 1.21.
Crystal and X-ray powder diffraction data are presented for the Al3Ho2Si2 ternary compound. The powder pattern was indexed and refined on a monoclinic cell with the Al3Y2Si2 structure type with space group C12/m1, a = 10.1096(2) Å, b = 4.020(6) Å, c = 6.5734(6) Å, β = 100.848(2)°, V = 262.37 Å3, Z = 2ρx = 5.910 g cm−3, F30 = 142.8(0.006, 35), and RIR = 0.91.
We studied seasonal patterns of swine hepatitis E virus (HEV) infection in China. From 2008 to 2011, 4200 swine bile specimens were collected for the detection of HEV RNA. A total of 92/2400 (3·83%) specimens in eastern China and 47/1800 (2·61%) specimens in southwestern China were positive for HEV. Seasonal patterns differing by geographical area were suggested. In eastern China, the major peak of HEV RNA prevalence was during March–April, with a minor peak during September–October, and a dip during July–August. In southwestern China, the peak was during September–October and the dip during March–April. The majority of subtype 4a cases (63/82, 76·83%) were detected in the first half of the year, while the majority of subtype 4b cases (26/29, 89·66%) were concentrated in the second half of the year, suggesting that different subtypes contribute to different peaks. Our results indicate that the distribution of HEV subtypes is associated with seasonal patterns.
In this paper, a novel sintering method is introduced for the forming of microcomponents in which the loose powders were loaded directly into the die, sintered with an external electric field, a thermal field, and an external stress field (called coupled multifields activation), where the fields were generated by a Gleeble thermal simulation instrument. Two kinds of 316L stainless steel powders of different particle sizes (20 and 70 μm) with no binder were sintered with microforming using a multifield coupling method. For particle size of 20 μm, a nearly fully densified microsintered compact (relative density is 99.2%) was manufactured at a relatively low sintering temperature (900 °C) and within a relatively short sintering time (4 min). The fluctuated temperature–time curve reveals that the rapid mass transfer of liquid phase is the dominant densification mechanism in the compacts with a starting particle size of 20 μm.
Vinpocetine has long been used for cerebrovascular disorders and cognitive impairment. Based on the evidence that the translocator protein (TSPO, 18 kDa) was expressed in activated microglia, while Vinpocetine was able to bind TSPO, we explored the role of Vinpocetine on microglia treated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and oxygen–glucose deprivation (OGD) in vitro. Our results show that both LPS and OGD induced the up-regulation of TSPO expression on BV-2 microglia by RT-PCR, western blot and immunocytochemistry. Vinpocetine inhibited the production of nitrite oxide and inflammatory factors such as interleukin-1β (IL-1β), IL-6 and tumour necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) in BV-2 microglia, in which cells were treated with LPS or exposed to OGD, regardless of the time Vinpocetine was added. Next, we measured cell death-related molecules Akt, Junk and p38 as well as inflammation-related molecules nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) and activator protein-1 (AP-1). Vinpocetine did not change cell death-related molecules, but inhibited the expression of NF-κB and AP-1 in LPS-stimulated microglia, indicating that Vinpocetine has an anti-inflammatory effect by partly targeting NF-κB/AP-1. Next, conditioned medium from Vinpocetine-treated microglia protected from primary neurons. As compared with in vitro, the administration of Vinpocetine in hypoxic mice also inhibited inflammatory molecules, indicating that Vinpocetine as a unique anti-inflammatory agent may be beneficial for the treatment of neuroinflammatory diseases.
Graphene, two-dimensional layers of sp2-bonded carbon, has many unique properties. In this paper, graphene is decorated with flower-like MnO2 nanostructures for the application in energy storage devices. The as-prepared graphene and MnO2 nano-flowers, which were characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM), were assembled into an asymmetric supercapacitor. The specific capacitance of the graphene electrode reached 245 F/g at a charging current of 1 mA. The MnO2 nano-flowers which consisted of tiny rods with a diameter of less than 10 nm were coated onto the graphene electrodes by electrodeposition. The specific capacitance after the MnO2 deposition is 328 F/g at the charging current of 1 mA with an energy density of 11.4Wh/kg and power density of 25.8 kW/kg. This work suggests that our graphene-based electrodes can be a promising candidate for high-performance energy storage devices.